BBQ Jams: Spotify Your 4th of July

As president Bill Pullman boisterously declared in Independence Day,

The Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day the world declared in one voice: We will not go quietly into the night! We will not vanish without a fight! We’re going to live on! We’re going to survive! Today we celebrate our Independence Day!

In this spirit we offer a list, a series of musical shenanigans, to soundtrack your drunken (or not so drunken) extravagance and bombastic cavorting! Happy 4th of July and try not to steal any other countries while you’re at it.

Joshua Cretella

At the peak moment in a well-crafted BBQ, all participants are truly feeling the heat. You’ve been outside for hours, slowly roasting in the afternoon sun, fattened up on sloppy burgers and icy beer. As the mustard stain seeps into your shirt, you gaze out in the yard and calculate how many beers you can conquer before tomorrow’s workday becomes an exercise in misery. Your skin will peel like a motherfucker tomorrow, anyway, so why not another two or three cold ones to compound the pain? For that moment, then, here are some blistering tracks, tunnels for your mind to burrow deep within and revive you for tonight’s fireworks (no guarantees about tomorrow morning at the office).

  • Endless Boogie, “Imprecations” from their 2013 LP, Long Island
  • Guided by Voices, “An Earful O’ Wax”
  • The Velvet Underground, “Sister Ray (Live @ the Family Dog)”
– – –

Benjamin Van Loon

Optimists like to say that July 4th is a day to celebrate American independence. Critics like not only to specify that July 2nd is actually the important date, but also that America is a country founded on genocide, slavery, greed, blah blah blah. I say both sides have it wrong. “America” is now a meaningless word, and in a global economic context, it’s damn near irrelevant. And so I say, July 4th is one of the rare venerated days we Americans have set aside to do jack shit. It’s the holy day of the middle class, and it is to this disappearing social sect I dedicate these songs. Grill in peace. Drink irresponsibly.

  • Air, “Brakes On”
  • Q And Not U, “Kiss Distinctly American”
  • Black Flag, “American Waste”
  • Wire, “Pink Flag”
  • Two Hours Traffic, “Territory”
  • Tame Impala, “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards”
  • Rodriguez, “Sugar Man”
  • Pissed Jeans, “Little Sorrel”
  • Pink Floyd, “The Nile Song”
  • ON AN ON, “Ghosts”
– – –

Benjamin N. Schachtman

For over a decade, the Fourth of July meant All Hands on Deck in the back of a restaurant. It meant cheap speed and a lot of coffee and sweating through three t-shirts. While America worshiped Bacchus, Neptune, and Helios, I was hacking weeds. But then—then!—at night, when the masses were sated, we’d sneak out of work, usually without cleaning up. We’d glance over our shoulders at the fireworks, desperate to get to our bars with enough time to get Korsakoff drunk before we had to do it all over again. These songs, our songs, were the smoky, drunken antithesis to the bright glory of July 4th (which I don’t denigrate, and embrace in raucous pagan fervor, whenever I can).

  • Down, “When the Levee Breaks
  • Gillian Welch, “My Morphine”
  • Alejandra Escovedo, “Pissed off 2am”
  • Deftones, “Simple Man”
  • Talking Heads, “Psycho Killer”
  • Brand New. “Jesus Christ”
  • C.o.C., “Pearls Before Swine”

– – –

Garrett D. Tiedemann

  • Matmos, “Stars and Stripes Forever”
  • Fog, “What a Day Day”
  • Slavic Soul Party, “Teknochek Collision”
  • TV On The Radio, “Family Tree”
  • The Afro Soul-Tet, “Chocolate Drop”
  • Petra Haden, “Psycho Main Title” – from Psycho
  • The Bad Plus, “Iron Man”
  • Sleater-Kinney, “Let’s Call It Love”
  • LCD Soundsystem, “Drunk Girls”
  • David Byrne & St. Vincent, “Dinner for Two”

– – –

Jacob Singer

  • Presidents of the United States of America, “We’re not going to make it”
  • The Replacements, “Beer for Breakfast”
  • BBQ, “Hang On
  • Elliott Smith, “Independence Day”
  • The Black Crowes, “Goodbye Daughters of the Revolution
  • µ-ziq, “Summer Living”
  • The Roots, “Dynamite”
  • Elvis Costello, “Indoor Fireworks”
  • Tortoise, “TNT
  • Ryan Adams, “Firecracker”
  • Walkmen, “Donde esta la Playa”
– – –

Josh Covell

  • The Roots, “Livin’ in a New World”
  • Jimi Hendrix, “Freedom”
  • Best Coast, “Summer Mood”
  • Stevie Wonder, “Living For the City”
  • Violent Femmes, “Blister in the Sun”
  • Common, “The Light”
  • Florence + the Machine, “Hurricane Drunk”
  • The Postal Service, “Brand New Colony”
  • Nas, “My Country”
  • The Black Keys, “See You Free”

Unironic bonus track

Parting image

[And here is the link to Anobium’s BBQ Jams playlist for your listening pleasure!]

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